A story with no challenges is boring and won’t engage your learners. When we use stories for learning, the challenges should mimic the kinds of issues learners will face in their real workplace. You don’t need an evil villain in your story, but you do need obstacles to overcome.
I have several upcoming events scheduled where I will present on scenario-based learning, certifications, and lessons learned in freelancing.
Scenarios for learning should include several critical elements: a protagonist or main character, that character’s goal, and the challenges that character faces. The main character’s goal is what drives the scenario. All of the action and decisions in the scenario move you closer or further from that goal.
The free open source tool Twine makes planning, writing, and creating branching scenarios easier. It provides a simple way to create functional prototypes.
In stories for learning, the protagonist should be someone your learners identify with, a person with similar goals and challenges.
How many options do you need in a branching scenario for each decision point? What numbergives the best balance of realism and manageable complexity?
Resources on Building branching scenarios, understanding performance problems, improving accessibility, creating videos, and moving from classroom to blended learning
Watch the recording of my webinar with Swapna Reddy on scenario-based learning.
A branch and bottleneck scenario structure keeps the complexity of branching scenarios manageable while allowing a deeper progression over time.
The links and resources in this post include branching scenarios, learner engagement, summaries of learning research, and good news for job seekers.